Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE) was established in the 17th century. While the RCPE is based in Edinburgh, it is not solely a Scottish professional body - more than half of its 7,700 Fellows, Members, Associates and Affiliates live and practice medicine outside Scotland, in 86 countries and covering 55 specialties.
The twenty-one founding Fellows of the College, (one of whom was Dr William Lauder (1652-1724), brother of John Lauder, Lord Fountainhall), were concerned not only with the advancement of medicine as a reputable science, but also with alleviating the miseries of Edinburgh's poor and needy.
Following successful completion of the MRCP(UK) examination, doctors are eligible to become Members and, in time, Fellows of the College.
The College was instrumental in founding the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary in 1729 and, over the years, has influenced the development of medical schools in North America, Australasia, Asia and Africa.
There is a separate Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.
The building is located on Queen Street in Edinburgh. Three figures stand above the entrance. These are: Aesculapius, the Greek god of medicine and healing (left); Hygieia, Greek god of cleanliness (centre/top); and Hippocrates, with the hypocratic oath (right). The RCPE building, located at 9 Queen Street, was designed by the Edinburgh architect Thomas Hamilton, and was built between 1844 and 1846. In 1868 the College purchased the adjacent building at 8 Queen Street, which had been built by the renowned and influential Edinburgh architect Robert Adam in 1771. The Physicians Hall, as the conjoined buildings are now collectively known, is a superb example of eighteenth century architecture; both the exterior and interior are extremely well preserved despite modernization.
Notes and references
- "Site Record for Edinburgh, 9-10 Queen Street, Royal College Of Physicians Edinburgh". Retrieved 4 July 2012.
- D Emslie Smith (2008). "Is the College an Asklepieion?". J R Coll Physicians Edinburgh. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
- Royal Commission of Ancient and Historic Monuments Scotland, Canmore Site Records (http://canmore.rcahms.gov.uk/): 9 Queen Street; 8 Queen Street.
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